"U.N. Says Emissions Vows Not Enough To Avoid Rise Of 2 Degrees C"

"NUSA DUA, Indonesia -- Emission cuts pledges made by 60 countries will not be enough to keep the average global temperature rise at 2 degrees Celsius or less, modeling released on Tuesday by the United Nations says.

Scientists say temperatures should be limited to a rise of no more than 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 F) above pre-industrial times if devastating climate change is to be avoided.

Yearly greenhouse gas emissions should not be more than 40 and 48.3 gigatonnes of CO2-equivalent in 2020 and should peak between 2015 and 2021, according to new modeling released on Tuesday by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).

Keeping within that range and cutting global emissions by between 48 percent and 72 percent between 2020 and 2050 will give the planet a 'medium' or 50-50 chance of staying within the 2 degree limit, said the report, which was based on modeling by nine research centres.

However, the same study found that the world is likely to go over those targets. The pledges were made by nations that signed up to the Copenhagen Accord."

Sunanda Creagh reports for Reuters February 24, 2010.

Source: Reuters, 02/24/2010